There is something very interesting about exercise. With most things in life, although we are in an information age, there is a lack of widely accessible information. For example, most of us would not easily access accurate information on how to install satellite television or how to read a financial statement.
However, when it comes to exercising, things are different, there is information everywhere and everyone somehow knows how to exercise. Lack of motivation towards exercise shows that we don’t do what we know. We also don’t do what we want because most of us really want to exercise, but we don’t always do it. Clearly, to exercise we need to do, not only what we know or want, but what we are motivated to do. In this article, I want to share some strategies that will help motivate you to exercise.
(I) Have a vision about your self-image
The truth is that most of us have a certain image of how we would like to see ourselves. Some people were born skinny, imagine themselves skinny, and have accepted that self-image. Some people were born with a little weight, imagine like this and even buy clothes that fit that image. Most of the time this is something that we are not always aware of.
I remember a time when my wife had gone 3 months without looking at her body in a mirror. Women cannot live without mirrors, she used a face mirror but not a full body mirror during that period for some reason. We went shopping. She saw herself in a full-length mirror to discover that her body shape had changed because she had gained weight. She freaked out and yelled “Wow, I’m fat.” Surely, I shouldn’t have been honest with her at home when answering her most frequently asked question “Do I look fat?”
It was true that my wife had gained weight. But what really disturbed her was that her body was different from her ideal shape or body weight. This annoyed and motivated her enough to exercise and lose extra fat in two weeks.
Without the vision of our ideal shape or body weight, we are doomed to pump food into our bodies and not make an effort to lose weight. I am telling you this because I would like to urge you to examine your vision of your ideal body weight before implementing the rest of the strategies that I will advise you to use in this article.
Some people want to be slim, but actually have a fat body image that slows them down. These people buy clothes that fit this image and accept their looks. They unconsciously sabotage their efforts to lose weight. If you don’t want to be skinny, it would help to think that you are skinny. If you think you are fat, you may have trouble losing weight. I am not saying that you should not accept yourself as you are. I’m saying I even thought you might have a vision about your healthy self-image. Just accepting yourself as you are can mean you want to change your self-image when it comes to being fit or losing weight. This is great for your emotional well-being, but it will also not help you achieve your fitness goals. If you accept yourself with the belly, why do you want a flat stomach?
(II) You care less about the comfort of your body
The main reason people don’t exercise is because they prefer body comfort over the pain of exercising. Body comfort is detrimental in the long run because it leads to a sedentary lifestyle. Therefore, the more you neglect your body comfort, the more you will subject your body to the physical stress of exercise.
Ironically, what you will find is that once you start exercising, you begin to find pleasure in exercising despite your body straining during exercise. People who have overcome their need for body comfort and struggled to exercise begin to feel uncomfortable when they haven’t exercised for a couple of days. The feeling of being unacceptable is strange when they have not run or have not cycled or have not lifted weights.
However, the first hurdle to overcome before reaching the level where exercise becomes a “must” and not a “must” is letting go of body comfort. Constantly, in your mind, argue against your body when seeking comfort. Naturally, your body will seek comfort. Your task is to press against your body and undergo the physical strain of exercise. Do not consider your mind and body as a unit. Your body will seek comfort but will argue through your mind and remember your exercise goals.
(III) Assign one hour of exercise every day
If nothing is labeled for exercise in your day, chances are you will never exercise. To exercise, you must have a time in your day that you intend to exercise no matter what happens. Clear the hour of exercise and don’t let anything disturb it. If you planned to run and it rains, you shouldn’t spend your exercise time watching a series on TV, you should be exercising at home. Don’t let anything come between you and your hour of exercise.
(IV) Forget about fitness rules, do whatever you want
As I said before, there is too much information on exercise. It’s easy to get caught up in what many experts think what exercise should be. What I have learned in life is that things are not done due to fixed rules. Things are done when we have fun and are excited.
Forget what other people think exercise should be. What exactly are you on? Do you like running, walking or cycling or do you like kick boxing? Whatever you like, let that be your exercise.
Once you gain momentum and move away from a sedentary lifestyle, you can make things a little better and put formalities into practice. The reason most of us learned how to ride a bike successfully when we were young even though the fall was painful was because we did what we liked. Do what you want when it comes to exercising to overcome what you perceive as pain when exercising.
(V) Don’t eat for pleasure
To stay motivated to exercise, you need to see results. Muscle gain or weight loss or toned body. If you don’t see results, you are likely to give up.
To see results you need to eat well. Remember that if you want to lose weight or gain muscle, 80% of exercise results depend on your diet and 20% depends on your physical effort.
I have prepared you to motivate yourself enough to exert effort. Do not let the diet undo what you have done.
Most people fail when it comes to diet because they eat for pleasure. When it comes to flavor, most of us would agree that KFC beats a plate of steamed vegetables. So when we eat for pleasure, we prepare for failure because most healthy foods don’t taste as good as garbage. Unless your wife is a great cook or has a professional chef in-house.
To see the results of your exercise, eat to nourish yourself. Tolerate the bitter taste of vegetables or whatever your vegetarian diet is. Diet plans fail when we eat to savor because we soon find ourselves without resisting the taste of a birthday cake. Commit to eating differently, for nutrition instead of taste. once in a while you can thank yourself with a small piece of your favorite tasty food.
Remember to stay inspired, to remove all the obstacles that stand in your way to success and don’t you dare give up on yourself or your dreams.